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along with sam stein and michael steele in washington. joining us also in washington, senior national correspondent for "bloomberg businessweek," joshua green. and joshua, before we go on to what led to this doomsday scenario that we're facing right now, which was all set up by lawmakers in washington, talk to me about what businesses are looking for and wall street is looking for. there will be reaction. there's always this discussion about the need for certainty. at best, we're going to get some sort of small deal that puts everything off, which makes this whole deadline make no sense. are businesses going to respond well to that? >> if we get a deal, yes. i mean, wall street all along has been looking to avert the fiscal cliff. and frankly, i don't think ceos and businesses care a whole lot about where income tax rates fall. in fact, you saw a number of ceos come out a few weeks ago and say they were happy for their taxes to rise, so long as washington could get a deal. i think they also expected a deal. and then over the last five days, as the talks seemed to fall apart, you saw t
gallagher in washington, vice president and executive director of msnbc.com. that was general norman swa schwartzkopf you saw on your screen who passed away yesterday. i have a lasting memory of general schwartzkopf who served in the war in vietnam as well as leading gulf storm one. there was a woman from iowa. her name was peg mullen. she wrote a book about the death of her son, michael mullen. the name of the book was "friendly fire." norman schwartzkopf was the battalion commander. he was so approachable to peg mullen, so human in his relations with peg mullen, who sought to find out how her son was killed in vietnam. he died from friendly fire, which, you know obviously meant he was killed within the confines of his own unit by shrapnel from american weapons fired. it was so impressive to read about then a colonel later to become norm an schwartzkopf general "time" magazine's man of the year who was so human. just that clip we just showed right then compared to a lot of military officials who we see on tv. an actual human being would could say i hope i don't make a mistake. things li
this is afternoon. the string of twitter messages about the budget negotiations in washington. the white house announcing in advance today that the president himself would be answering people's questions about the negotiations in washington. he would be answering them directly on twitter starting at 2:00 p.m. eastern. it is kind of awesome that regular people can ask direct questions from the leader of the free world. it's like a town hall but you don't have to go to new hampshire in the winter to do it. but doing this shows the unique risks of totally unmediated communication methods for high profile people. like there was this exchange this afternoon which does make sense and it is on message, even if at first it doesn't seem that way. the person who's writing the president here is called, don't be a prat. that's their name on twitter. here's the president answering the question. @barackobama. as a recent college grad without a job, these cuts wouldn't help me, would they? here's the president's response. cuts without revenue e equal reductions in student loans. also work study credits expir
medicare and do not want it to be cut. and wonks in washington, d.c. spend their time trying to figure out how to cut medicare. both democrat and republican. and with this very thorny contradiction in mind, politicians and think tank analysts and the like have developed a whole secondary-coated language to talk about medicare. so premium support instead of privatizing medicare, and structural medicare reform instead of raising the eligibility age. now, remember the context for all this. this is important. remember that phrase we first started hearing at the start of the health reform debate, which may be apocryphal, "keep government hands off my medicare." the big tea party uprising was in large part a reaction to the idea, quote/unquote, of socialized medicine. it was the affordable care act, and the government, quote, takeover of health care, that fanned the flames of the post-obama tea party protest. but, of course, most of the actual republicans who were actually elected back then were elected because they ran ads like this. >> congressman brad ellsworth said he would protect our senio
in washington. let's start with this. president obama and his republican opponents are about to go over niagra falls in a barrel, but nobody knows for shush how bad it's going to be. will the economy smash on the rocks below? will the stock market plunge a thousand points and keep on dropping? will the world money watchers see the u.s. drowning in its own dysfunction? or will obama and the dead-end opposition it faces be saved by the public's horribly low expectations of what they can do? what will prove stronger for obama and boehner? the barrels they're riding in or >>> heading over niagra falls in a barrel. let's play "hardball." >>> good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let's start with this. president obama and his republican opponents are about to go over niagra falls in a barrel, but nobody knows for shush how bad it's going to be. will the economy smash on the rocks below? will the stock market plunge a thousand points and keep on dropping? will the world money watchers see the u.s. drowning in its own dysfunction? or will obama and the dead-end opposition it faces be saved b
and the rest of the gop to step up. joining me now, marie cox, washington correspondent for the guardian. and leah henderson, national reporter for the washington post. thank you both for being here this evening. >> it's great to be here. >> good to be here. >> leah, let me start with you. the republicans realize they're on the wrong side of public opinion here? or do they care? >> well, you know, i think you definitely see from democrats from the president using the power of the bully pulpit really underscoring the fact that he won the election. you had pelossi saying essentially that where republicans are ice lated from the public in terms of their stance from the tax hike. i think you see the president continue a campaign that he started in 2008, really, a campaign against extending these tax cuts. now he's able to go to not only the american people, but businesses in wall street. and in that way, i think he's giving cover to some republicans who have been so staunchly opposed to these tax hikes. i think one of the things that's real real really interesting is that is this report that
again. the president in washington and another deadline. secretary geithner warns we will hit the debt ceiling even before we tumble over the fiscal cliff. good morning from washington. it is thursday, december 27th. this is "the daily rundown." i'm luke russert. two days after christmas and washington is back to work trying to harsh out a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff. the senate will get back from the session after holiday break. the president is expected to arrive back to the white house without his family to get back to twork mework to meet the loo deadline. mike is at the white house. let's start with you. the consensus around the hill is that we are more likely than not to go over the fiscal cliff, but there is a small chance harry reid could take a house pass bill and amend it and send it back over to the house. what are you hear being that? >> conceivably, but when the president lights upon the south lawn and the marine one later this morning, it's unclear why he is coming back and who will be here with him. as you mentioned, speaker boehner remains in ohio where he is from. h
. >>> the president gets set to land in washington this hour. there's new word that the president has called all four congressional leaders. reid, mcconnell, boehner and pelosi. . joining me to talk more, we have peter alexander standing by at the white house as well as nbc's mike viqueira on capitol hill. some verbal smackdown, basically flipping the lights back on and harry reid taking to the floor to eviscerate speaker boehner. >> the sad part is you often seen the floor opened that way. mitch mcconnell being later today. i'm sure we'll hear something later. to hear it two days after christmas and a matter of days before we go through the fiscal cliff, obviously not encouraging. harry reid says time is running hout. he doesn't know if they could go through the legislative hurdles. if they have the votes around here, they can legislate the sky is green and the grass is blue. that's not an issue. what harry reid is really saying is mitch mcconnell, get on board, don't try to filibuster. of course they're talking about a bill that had raise capital on couples making more than $250,000 a year, and do
was equipped with the tools of mass murder, made a speech in washington that did not include a single word of apology. there is no chance, no chance, that wayne lapierre will choose to say what is best for the country or our children. >> since when did the gun become a bad word? >> the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun. >> is a good guy with the gun. >> it is the good guys against the bad guys and everyone should have a gun. >> the nra embarrassed itself. >> very haunting and disturbing. >> basically we are all targets. >> and our society is populated by an unknown number of genuine monsters. >> and we need to have a gun on us at all times. >> i call on congress today to put armed police officers in every school in the nation. >> what does that say about me? >> the media called me crazy. >> this guy is whacked. >> this was not a press conference. >> that was a commercial. >> more of a commercial. >> he didn't even take questions. >> the most bizarre press briefings i have ever witnessed. >> since when did the gun before a bad word? >> wayne lapierre blamed the media, video games.
turn it into politics. and that is what appears to be the case right now in washington, d.c. >> but, sir, politics have a huge influence in this, as we look at the nra which is large lobbying group for gun manufacturers that has supported -- they support you. you have an "a" rating from them. you have voted yes on promoting gun sellers and manufacturers. and yes on the waiting periods taking waiting periods from 72 hours to one day yes on a trigger lock law in washington, d.c. how can you say politics are not involved with this when you look at a voting record right there. the nra gives you an "a" in allowing for people like an adam lanza to have access to the weapons he might have had. his mother might have had it legally, but we cannot police what his mother is doing inside that house to keep lanza away from those weapons. >> yes, and none of the policy issues which you just ticked off would have prevented adam lanza from doing this. and it is very sad that we want to cloud the issue by making nra the policy, as opposed to adam lan za and what triggers this. think of germany, germ
in washington today. a little bit of news that came from an unexpected source. bob woodward got his hands on an audio recording of the top commanding general in afghanistan meeting off the record with a fox news analyst. the meeting took place last spring. it was general david petraeus who was at the time commander of all u.s. forces in the war in afghanistan. and on the tape, fox news analyst says that she was asked by her boss, by the chairman of fox news to pass along some very specific advice for general petraeus. >> if you're offered chairman, take it. if you're offered anything else, don't take it. resign in six months and run for president. okay? and i know you're not running for president, but at some point when you go to new york next, you may want to just chat with roger. i just say what i have suggested and that we've discussed is next time you go to new york you're going to stop by and see him? >> yeah. i'd be happy. i haven't seen him in awhile. he's a brilliant guy. >> he's simply brilliant. >> he is. tell him if i ever ran, but i won't. but if i ever ran, i'd take him up on
know what, the president is the leatheaet lead. i expect him to be in washington rather than out campaigning. the campaigning is over. it's time to sit at the table with the leaders and that's what it's going to take. i'm very disappointing that's not happening. >> i want to play something that house speaker boehner had to say yesterday. >> the revenues we're putting on the table are going to come from guess who? the rich. now, there are ways to limb the deduction, close loopholes and have the same people pay more of their money to the federal government without raising tax rates. >> congresswoman, the "new york times" reporting today that boehner is enjoying the broadest support he has seen in two years but as you know, a lot of conservatives are very angry over his giving any ground on revenue. is the speaker's leadership still strong in your estimation? >> i think it is. and i know that it's a very tough position for our leader to be in. and especially tough when he cannot get the president to come to the table and in addition to that, we have the administration that keeps mov
that vowed to change washington. >> the tea party movement is alive and well. >> it's going to continue to redefine the political landscape in 2012. >> this november we're going to take back the senate and fortify the house. be aware, washington. tea party patriots are alive and well. >> didn't exactly work out that way, now, did it? this election sent tea party stars packing. joe walsh, gone. allen west, gone. richard mourdock, gone. todd akin, gone. and it's not just the election losses. the cracks are springing up all over the tea party kettle. this week, we learned that dick armey, the head of the major tea party group, freedom works, is out. one by one, gop lawmakers have distanced themselves from the tea party's once sacred anti-tax pledge. 44 and counting. and the american people are rejecting the entire movement. the group's disapproval rating has jumped 24 point since 2010. so the tea party's monster looks like its on its last leg. all i can say is, good rid dance. joining me now is former governor of pennsylvania, ed rendell, and now an msnbc political analyst. and joan walsh,
auto workers. good morning from washington, tuesday, december 11th, 2012. i'm chuck todd. one of those times in washington when the less that is said the better the news may be, that is if you hope lawmakers and the president come to an agreement on a verdict in this so-called fiscal cliff. we know some of you don't want to deal, but the president has no public events today and not many planned for this week. many at the white house and congress believe the less that anyonecome pains publicly the better the chances are at striking some sort of fragile deal. the president was back on the road monday trying to wheel a little bit of his political capital to drive home the deal that he wants at a minimum on the fiscal cliff. >> typical middle class family of four will see an income tax hike of around $2,200 how many of you can afford to pay another $ $2,200 in taxes? not you? i didn't think so. we can solve this problem. congress needs to sign a law that would prevent a tax hike on the first $250,000 of everybody's income. everybody. >> but the president was noticeably less confrontational
. christmas break is already over for president obama. he's flying back to washington tonight and aides say he's ready for a deal. it's not clear whether this trip is a sign of compromises to come or another display of theater showing the president is willing to work even as his opponents skip town. meanwhile, though, americans are growing skeptical. in the last week alone, gallup found a 15-point drop in the number of americans who think congress will negotiate a deal on the fiscal cliff. that's not all, holiday spending also hit its lowest rate since the 2008 recession, which retailers are blaming on the uncertainty in washington. so where do we go from here? well, since the house failed to get a vote on the tax package last week, all eyes are on the senate. a temporary deal that would basically extend all the tax cuts for those making under a quarter million. the deal would also rescue long-term unemployment benefits and instead of addressing those automatic spending cuts we've all heard about that are set for january 1st, this temporary deal would delay them for another six months. few are
have big news out of washington, where nothing is happening. the house is not in session, and as of this moment has no plans to be in session for the end of the year. nothing is stirring, not even harry reid. yes, i'm still in the christmas spirit. the president meanwhile is in hawaii and won't be returning until tomorrow. now, normally nothing happening would not be big news in washington. nothing happening is kind of the status quo in washington. getting nothing done is to our political system as saying great is to tony the tiger. it's just kind of what we do now. right now, this week, nothing happening is huge news. the reason is that usually when washington doesn't do anything nothing happens. you do nothing, nothing happens. that's how it goes. in fact that's why people call it doing nothing. after you do it, nothing occurs. if washington doesn't do something, a lot happens. all the bush tax cuts expire, the payroll tax cuts expire. doctors participating in medicare, see their reimbursements cut by more than 25%. good luck getting a doctor then. more than a trillion
last night. he touched down in washington early this morning. and he was a senator by this afternoon. that is a big day. so senator schatz, welcome to washington. welcome to the u.s. senate. there is a lot to catch up on. first of all, many of your new colleagues, most of the people you're about to join, they won their elections back in november. you of course did not. so it is possible that between november and now, like a normal human being, you were not paying all that much attention 20 what washington has been up to. it's the end of the year. things have slowed down. we're waiting for a new congress to come in. usually you would have time to get your bearings to figure out where the bathrooms are. that is not going to be the case this year. not with the fiscal cliff. luckily for you, we here at "the rachel maddow show," we have been paying attention. we have had absolutely no other choice, unfortunately. and we are here to help you and everyone else trying to figure out how we got to this point we are in. right after that election, the day after the election, in fact, your new co
to see who will blink first. brian moore, nbc news in washington. >>> bad news in afghanistan. a navy s.e.a.l. was killed during a rate saving dr. dill lop joseph who was kidnapped by the taliban. he was working for morning star development. the rescue mission was launched because u.s. officials believed the to being tore's life was in danger. president obama said the special forces soldier gave his life for a fellow american. >>> into syria, violence spilled over the border leaving 17 people dead. richard engel reports syrians are struggling to deal with the blood shet. >> reporter: parts of syria that are controlled by the rebels, there is no talk at all to finding a peaceful solution. the trips and meetings of hillary clinton with the u.n. and her russian counterpart, there's no hope for a diplomatic solution. instead what the people talk about are the suffering of the people. this house was bombed by mistake. the people who lived here lived next to a rebel commander. now they're homeless. there is also tremendous economic difficulties here. the syrian currency is worth about half of
there seems to be progress still no fiscal cliff deal in washington. house speaker john boehner said he has a backup plan. but that's not enough for one in three americans who according to a new survey are cutting back on spending due to fears of going over that cliff. nbc's tracie potts joins us now with more. good morning. >> reporter: mara, good morning. good morning, everyone. there is brand new evidence in that survey that americans are really feeling the squeeze before we've even gone over the cliff, plus republicans are changing their strategy. republicans are planning a vote as early as tomorrow to keep taxes low for everyone making up $1 million. >> going to have to go to plan "b." because we want to make sure we do not go off the cliff. >> everyone should understand boehner's proposal will not pass the senate. >> reporter: president obama offered a lower threshold, 400,000. >> the president has come halfway. he hopes that the republicans will do the same. >> reporter: republicans see this million dollar vote as a last-ditchest to save business o ditch effort to save business owner
we'll get through this. do i wish that things were more orderly in washington? and ration enamel? and people listened to the best arguments and compromised and operate in a more thoughtful and organized fashion? absolutely. when you look at history that's the exception rather than the norm. >> now here is your "first look" at politics. long lines in florida discouraged 49,000 people in voting. on "meet the press" tom brokaw says there's a simple explanation for what's wrong with our election and lawmakers sent to washington. >> the system is rigged. 75% of the congressmen come from gerry mandered districts in which they are bullet proof. >> as 2012 comes to an end. the 112th congress will go down in history as the most unproductive in 60 years, only 219 bills have been passed and has become law compared to 380 bills passed by the last congress, 460 by the one before that. >>> despite that terrible record president obama has signed an executive order giving returning members of congress a 1% raise. >>> and the senate did put in some extra work hours last night but there was some g
staring down the fiscal cliff. t-minus nine hours and counting and washington is wasting no time. senate minority leader mcconnell saying both sides are close to a deal. it's about time. >> my preference would have been to solve all these problems in the context of a larger agreement, a bigger deal, a grand bargain. whatever you want to call it. that solves our deficit problems in a balanced and responsible way. with this congress, that was obviously a little bit too much to hope for at this time. it may be we can do it in stages. >> there are a number of issues on which the two sides are still apart but negotiations are continuing as i speak. but we really are running out of time. >> the vice president and i have worked together on solutions before and i believe we can again. >> no holiday for the best political team around. a triple threat, luke russert and mike viqueira on the capitol hill and kristen welker from the white house. are you happy to be working on the holiday? >> it's fantastic. >> absolutely. >> sounded believable. viq, let's start with you. we have news trickling out to
now from washington, is the president for -- president of americans for tax reform, conservative counter broker and the man who does not believe in unicorns, pink or otherwise, mr. grover norquist. grover, what a day to have you on the show. thanks for joining us. >> absolutely. of course, you know, north korea and -- media announced they did find unicorns in north korea. >> we don't often take our cues from them. i am one that firmly believes in the existence of unicorns somewhere and hopefully maybe in this fiscal cliff deal. grover, the first question i have for you is this, your pledge, the pledge that many republicans have signed on to, opposes any and all efforts to increase marginal income tax rates and opposes any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits unless matched for dollar by further reducing tax rates. closing loopholes and ending deductions would seem to increase the tax burden that americans are paying to the federal government. given that, do you support the proposal put forward by john boehner? >> well, because the proposal is significantly amorp
to "morning joe." this morning, washington is just hours away from a self-imposed doomsday scenario, a deadline that was meant to force lawmakers to cut a deal to confront the nation's debt. in other words, this cliff-hanger has been two years in the making. >> i've said before that i felt that the middle-class tax cuts were being held hostage to the high-end tax cuts. i think it's tempting not to negotiate with hostage takers. unless the hostage gets harmed. then people will question the wisdom of that strategy. in this case, the hostage was the american people. and i was not willing to see them get harmed. now, is this the deal i would have preferred? no. but this compromise does make a serious down payment on the deficit reduction we need. most importantly, it will allow us to avoid default and end the crisis that washington imposed on the rest of america. it ensures also that we will not face this same kind of crisis again in six months or eight months or 12 months. and it will begin to lift the cloud of debt and the cloud of uncertainty that hangs over our economy. >> it's a re
in washington and said we have a messaging problem here. we want to get a deal, the white house isn't talking to us. how do we want to put that out in the public, so they know it's the white house who won't talk with us. the white house knows public opinion is on their side, "washington post" "pew center poll said 50% blame republicans. >> the message you talk about chris is working but there's the other possibility that's out there that's emerging kind of a two-part deal, first you would approve tax cuts for the middle class, the 98% and you wait on everything else until january or february, when you have to raise the debt ceiling. some republicans think that could give them more leverage. would that be smart rana? >> for the country, not. for the republicans sadly maybe so. you get to a point where the president has less leverage. is the u.s. going to default on its debt, are we going to be back in that position we were in not so long ago? that will be a tough spot. the political fallout and the economic fallout of that, the u.s. never defaulted on its debt, there was a terrible market vola
partyiers. joining me now is michelle cottle, washington correspondent for "newsweek "and "the daily beast" and ezra cline who is a policy analyst. thank you both for coming on the show tonight. >> thank you. >> thanks, rev. >> michelle, let me start with you. the president ran on raising taxes on the rich and he won on that premise. why didn't the gop get the message? >> oh, they got the message but this is high posturing season. they have to get in there and be as intransident as they possibly can. the president has said that he wants tax rates for the wealthy on the table. so they are just going to push this as far as they can. they are going to kick this can down the road again. >> now, ezra, you wrote today that speaker boehner's trying to call a mull lee began. what do you mean by that? >> i'm drawing on my very shallow message of golf. he wants a do-over here. so what speaker boehner's proposal is today, i give him some credit here, this is the most moderate proposal he's made in public by a long shot. he's taken the proposal that erskine bowles presented to the super committee as a
. i think the best way to break this political gridlock in washington is to go directly to the american people because it's we the people that can demand the politicians and congress resolve this fiscal cliff, but resolve it in a way that makes our country stronger. that's why the president's come here to metro detroit. we're the home for u.s. manufacturing. also we're the home for the american worker. we need to resolve our fiscal problems, but resolve them in a way that continues to investigation in training and educating our workers and advanced manufacturing and also providing the revenue that we need to still provide health care to our seniors and social security to those who depend on it. >> sir, let's talk about getting to the sensible center here. because as the politico poll that i referenced earlier off the top of the show indicates, 59% oppose significant cuts to defense but 75% favor across the board spending cuts. so where are you and other colleagues willing to start with those spending cuts? i mean, what are democrats willing to put on the table specifical
, the majority of voters from both parties want washington to make it happen. joining me is south carolina congressman james clyburn. sir, good to have you here. we just heard nancy pelosi calls on congress not to leave the hill after a two-day work week. are republicans on the hill wanting to do the same thing, wanting to stay there and get this deal done? >> thank you so much for having me, thomas. yeah, i do believe we want to see the deal done. i've talked to a lot of republicans who feel that we ought to do this. before we go home. then come back next week for a day or so to rat that fi whatever it is to put in place. and then go home so that the holidays with our families and friends. so people want to see this done. they know pretty much what has to be done. and they would like to see us just do it. and get out of here. >> congressman, are the outs in the favor of this two-step process of getting something done that will save the majority of americans 98% from tax increases come the new year? is that mainly the game plan at this point, with time running down? >> well, i hope it is.
certainly hope somebody thought in the washington, d.c., area will invite me to dinner for christmas day. i don't even know if i will be able to get home. but i think if we do, we will then be very concerned about an austerity cliff. and really destroying our economy. i think it is very egregious that the republicans are willing to destroy the economy, perhaps create a worldwide recession, on behalf of continuing to campaign on their failed campaign of 2012. >> congresswoman, thank you so much for your time. i greatly appreciate it. >> thank you for having me, tamron. >> of course. let me bring in our news nation political panel today, nationally syndicated talk show host, michael mir is con his, chris kofinis and cheryl taupe let's from roll call. chris irk let me start off with an interesting thing i have noticed today. you have both sides now you not just saying but implying the other wants to go off the cliff for some kind of gain. >> not sure what gape they have. they have to budge on tax rates, that doesn't mean speaker boehner's party and caucus has come to terms with that. that is t
been posted by the "washington post" for tomorrow, and saying that it had become a distraction, that she wants to focus on her work and that clearly was not possible the way this had proceeded. i think that no one asked her to withdraw but they were unable, since she had not been nominated and the president was still obviously ambivalent between her and john kerry at this stage, they did not surround her with the kind of support she would have had if she had been a nominee. i think it's very clear from our reporting and from chuck todd's reporting that some of the top advisers in the white house, they were divided also, but some of the top advisers said to the president you do not need this political battle right now with the republican senate because this would stretch the benghazi investigation forever and it would mean that the confirmation hearing would be very difficult. they probably could have won it. but that it would be a distraction from the main act, which is to move on, create a cabinet, have a national security team and focus on the tax and spending debate, which i
congress leave washington without taking care of these folks. >> john nichols, as always, thank you so very much, my friend. that's it for the ed show. ezra klein is filling in for rachel tonight. always good to see you, my friend. >> good to see you too, and happy friday. and thanks to you at home for sticking around for the next hour. rachel's got the night off, but we learned something huge today. we are going over the fiscal cliff. we are going either all the way over or going partly over, but we are definitely, definitely going over. that whole fiscal cliff thing, where congress and the white house can't reach a deal on taxes and spending before the end of the year and they maybe get us into a recession, it's definitely happening. that was the whole point of president obama's press conference this afternoon. >> i still want to get this done. it's the right thing to do for our families, for our businesses, and for our entire economy. but the hour for immediate action is here. it is now. >> allow me a quick update here. that press conference, it came after president obama met with john b
. the president cuts his vacation short to come back to washington, d.c., meanwhile, house republicans are literally phoning it in, this is the ed show, and as ed would say, let's get to work. >> this is something within our capacity to solve. it doesn't take that much work, we just have to do the right thing. >> six days away from the fiscal cliff and there are real consequences to millions of americans if no deal is cut. congressman elijah cummings and ryan grim of the huffington post are here with the latest. a tea party giant stages a coupe with his own office. the details on dick armey's hostile takeover. the nra is catching heat from all directions. >> i don't think the nra is listening, i don't think they understand. >> georgetown university law professor, david cole on the growing drumbeat against the nra. >>> six days until the price of milk shoots up to $8 a gallon. why house republicans are take ing america to the dairy cliff. >>> and civil liberty groups take on torture in zero dark thirty. >>> if no deal is reached, the nation will go over the fiscal cliff in a little more
. ♪ >> we begin as president obama and the senate head back to washington set for one last effort to avert the first fiscal cliff. aloha means good-bye for the president as he packs bound for the white house tonight. the president cutting short his vacation leaving michelle and the girls behind as he gets back to work to try to prevent tax increases and spending cuts due to begin next week. there's just one problem. it appears there would be no house republicans to help hammer out a deal. the gop leadership has not yet called their members back to d.c. and will not be in session tomorrow for legislative business. according to one gop aide, they felt it's up to the democrats to act now. so the christmas spirit has not softened actions. but what has softened? customer confidence. in the last week gallup found the drop in the likelihood congress will come to a deal. also holiday spending hit its lowest rate since the 2008 recession. while the president said before he left for hawaii that he said he hoped the holiday would give them a chance to cool off and reach an agreement, it appears repub
, telling them to return to washington this sunday. but just because they're coming back doesn't mean they're looking to play nice. today, senator harry reid blasted the speaker for refusing to even vote on a democratic plan that would protect 98% of americans. >> everyone knows that if they had brought up the house -- i'm sorry, the senate-passed bill that would give relief to everyone making less than $250,000 a year, it would pass overwhelmingly. it's being operated with a dictatorship of the speaker. >> a dictatorship of the speaker. and here's house speaker boehner office responded. senator reid should talk less and legislate more. legislate more? what legislation has speaker boehner been working on while on vacation? while we're about to go over the cliff, the gop has been pointing fingers at the president. one gop aide says talks have failed because "the president made a strategic miscalculation and overreached. he picked a fight." picked a fight? sorry, that's not going to fly. the president has come to the table with numerous proposals. he isn't picking a fight. he's fighting for
this in washington. as the legendary everett dirksen once said, a billion here a billion there, pretty soon you're talking real money, about you this debate isn't just about the billions here and there. for average families the payroll tax cut that started two years ago is worth around 1000 as year. those families tend to spend that cash because they need it now. republicans say this is one tax cut they hate and the last time it was going to expire, the white house launched a whole campaign about $40 a paycheck. they asked families to send in their stories about what $40 meant to them. well, you know something? $40 a still a lot of cash for the families hit hardest by the great recession. for the wealthy people sitting around the negotiating table in d.c., $40 is just another steak dinner for one. but for many people who voted them into office, it's the cost of groceries for a week of family dinners. let's not forget, they are the ones who still need an economic stimulus, not the families earning more than $250,000 a year. joining me today on a newsy day, "the huffington post" sam stein and the
, including mcclatchy service and the "washington post." he has been missing in syria since august. in all there are 15 journalists who have reported to have gone missing in syria while reporting on this conflict. so far of the 15 only eight have been freed. our richard and ghazi and john are three of them. we and they and their families feel very lucky and very happy tonight that that is the case, even as we continue to be concerned about those for whom we cannot yet say that foreign correspondents and crews know exactly how dangerous it can be to report from a war zone. we know in part from their reporting that this particular war zone appears to be descending into just total chaos right now. you can see signs of that in the syrian government's apparent decision to fire scud missiles inside its own territory at its own people. they deny they have done it. nato says they have evidence they have. you can see it in the increasing alarm in the increasing reports that the regime may at least be moving its chemical weapons stocks around the country. you can see it in richard's latest reporting
of the sheriff. >> just broken. >> washington was -- washington barely ran for a second term because he was so tired of being criticized. adams was defeated. jefferson left under a huge cloud. truman is the modern example of every president who gets in trouble wants to be truman because it means history implicates you, right? one of the things that happened was watergate. and it took 30 years, maybe a little bit less, but truman -- remember that one-man show -- >> the merle miller one? >> the plain speaking -- but there was a one-man show that went on just as watergate was breaking. and truman had the great good fortune of having disliked richard nixon early and had a lot of quotations about it. and he suddenly, as faith in the public sector is falling in the early '70s, all the examples you're talking about with truman are looking better and better. a president who, as evan wrote about the wise men, he was the popular embodiment of an american willingness to project power and to stand guard over a really complicated dark world. >> by the way, during the mid'70s, also, even chicago, the band c
in a barrel. let's play "hardball." ♪ >>> good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. let's start with this. president obama and his republican opponents are about to go over niagra falls in a barrel, but nobody knows for shush how bad it's going to be. will the economy smash on the rocks below? will the stock market plunge a thousand points and keep on dropping? will the world money watchers see the u.s. drowning in its own dysfunction? or will obama and the dead-end opposition it faces be saved by the public's horribly low expectations of what they can do? what will prove stronger for obama and boehner? the barrels they're riding in or the power of niagra falls itself? joining me now is politico's jonathan ryan. how about an answer on that one? what's going to protect these guys more? the low expectations people have about them getting anything done or failing to do what they set out to do. they all set the deadline. they have the -- what do you call it. the stakes are clear, the payroll taxes, income taxes, you name it. they put it all together. and if they blow it, who's going
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